College life plan: 4 ways to break out of your comfort zone

College students often find college a scary place whether you’re an introvert or extrovert. Everything is new, you’re independent from mom and dad, and your education depends solely on the choices you make.

Playing it safe can hold you back from the wonders college offers. So here are some do-it-yourself tips to get out of your comfort zone and enjoy college life.

1. Have confidence.

The biggest impediment to succeeding is doubt. Fear of failure can grab you and cripple you before you even begin to grow. Accept that failure is an option and is the best learning experience. Be confident that your choices matter and are part of everyday life. Have a positive attitude … and smile! With confidence comes the belief in yourself and your abilities. Writing in “Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone in College,” posted February 16, 2016, Megan Schroeder of the University of Wisconsin said: “Whether it’s getting a leadership position at work or an organization, just speaking up in class, or introducing yourself first, completing one of these tasks will make you realize just how capable you actually are. Maybe you can inspire someone to do the same.”

2. Grow in increments.

College is especially difficult for introverts who prefer alone time rather than partying or forced socializing. No one said you have to run full force into the social life of college, but introverts can join clubs and meet new friends in their classes. “College gave me freedom to feel welcome, because there were a lot more people like me, introverted,” said Allison Acquaviva, a graduate of Utica College with a degree in public relations, in “Introverts on Campus Stepping Out of Their Comfort Zone,” by Joan Raymond posted at March 15, 2016. It’s also important to “create your own fun,” Acquaviva said, which can include activities like yoga, art, book club, charity work, etc.

3. Speak up in class.

According to a writer in “Top 5 Ways To Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone In College,” posted on, “Speaking up and asking questions reminds the professor or graduate assistant that you are actively intrigued by your learning, that you pay attention to detail and have a strong work ethic.” Speaking in class discussions helps you become confident in your assessments, gain knowledge in the material, and prepare you for the working world where you’ll need to learn to communicate and share ideas with colleagues.

4. Join a club, group or cause.

Although gathering with like-minded people is not exactly going outside your comfort zone, joining a group of others helps you learn to communicate, take leadership positions, make decisions, make compromises, make new friends and contribute to planning and organizing.

Other suggestions…

…for getting out of your comfort zone and experiencing something new:

  • Sing in public.
  • Take a class you know nothing about.
  • Ask a boy/girl on a date.
  • Talk to your teachers.
  • Introduce yourself to a stranger.
  • Offer encouragement to someone.
  • Visit a church, synagogue, mosque or other religious place different from your own.
  • Instead of driving (if you have a car), take the bus or Uber into town.
  • Make friends with your roommate. Accompany him/her to an event or activity.
  • Ask questions – of everyone, everywhere.
  • Do a selfless good deed.

What are some ways you plan to get out of your comfort zone this semester?

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